Time To Reassess W. Chatham Project
I recently read an article that stated that the Massachusetts State budget will be $400 to $500 million short of what is required when the fiscal year ends on June 30.
This opens up the question of how priorities are reviewed to fund the most urgent needs in the state since not all needs can be met. This immediately brings into focus the $4 million-plus West Chatham Roadway Project. It is hard to understand how this project originally made it through the various levels of government review when compared to other more deserving projects. In addition, how did the constantly increasing costs continue to be approved with little scrutiny. And all the costs are not included yet. Now that the state is clearly in need of funds, this project cannot possibly compete with other needs.
Just to emphasize this, there are better uses for the money right here in Chatham. Many miles of roads in Chatham need resurfacing. Some of them can shake the screws out of your sunglasses. The walkways that exist are in need of repair. Harding's Beach should be renourished. There is hardly any beach to enjoy at high tide. The beach is one of the main attractions contributing to the financial and environmental health of the town, unlike the road project that will only still be a way that people use to go somewhere else.
All the common sense arguments against the project have not prevailed, including the over 2,000 people who do not want the changes made.
I believe the selectmen and the town manager have the responsibility to reassess this project in light of the new information on the state's financial condition and all other needs including our local finances. This should be done in concert with the appropriate state functions.
Editor's note: Most of the funding for the West Chatham project is from the federal government, not the state.
>Panel Discussion Was SRO
The Chatham Alliance for Preservation and Conservation sponsored a public forum on June 24 on Living and Working with Chatham’s Challenging Shoreline: Dynamics and Challenges for the Future, at the Chatham Community Center. We want to thank everyone who attended the event, and to say we are sorry to those who couldn’t find a place to sit or stand. Moderator Tim Wood and speakers Greg Berman, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution; Jamie Bassett, chair of the Chatham Shellfish Advisory Committee; Ted Keon, Chatham Director of Coastal Resources; and Stuart Smith, Chatham Harbormaster presented diverse and informative perspectives on this timely topic. The Alliance wishes we could have accommodated everyone who wanted to attend and thanks those who came early to get a seat or a place to stand.
Gloria Freeman, President
Chatham Alliance for Preservation and Conservation
Watch For Aggressive Reps
Sales reps for an energy company are going door-to-door in Chatham, trying to get EverSource customers to switch. I say overly aggressive, because my mother tells me that a "nice, young girl" came to the door, came inside and went on my mother's computer to look up her bill, told her she could save money, misled her that she was from EverSource (which is not true), and convinced her then and there to sign the sales rep's iPad. My wonderfully, nice mother is pushing 90, and the "nice, young girl" should be ashamed of herself. I realize that door-to-door sales are legal, but being overly aggressive and misleading should be reported to the community.